WPT Korea Main Event: Final Table is Set!

The WPT National Korea is finally heading to its last chapter with 6 players fighting for the coveted 1st place.

Final Table (Photo PKC)
Final Table (Photo PKC)

The Main Event which has a buy-in of KRW2,000,000 had every spectator and player on their toes, wondering if there would be an overlay.  But thanks to the influx of players that came in as the event progressed, the tournament saw a participation of 152 players which was enough to reach the KRW300,000,000 guarantee.

The final 6 players are as follows (enumerated by seating number):

  1. Russell Thomas

Russell Thomas has the 3rd largest chip stack of the final 5 players, with 919,000 chips entering Day 4.  Russell Thomas is an experienced poker player that has done the rounds in the US circuits, as well as the European and Asia Pacific tours.  His biggest tournament cash out to date was in 2012 when he placed 4th in the Main Event of the most prestigious poker tournament in the world, the World Series of Poker (WSOP).  For his efforts then, he brought home a whopping $ 2,851,537.

  1. Tao Bi

Tao Bi is a poker player from China with 675,000 chips.  Although he has no live tournament winnings to his name, Tao Bi is a familiar face in the Asian circuit normally seen playing at the Asian Poker Tour (APT).  Having gone this deep in the WPT National Korea, this just may be his chance to earn himself a trophy and the bragging rights of being a champion of a prestigious event such as the WPT.

  1. Hiroyuki Noda

Hiroyuki Noda, with 894,000 chips for Day 4, is a poker player from Japan that has also travelled around the world to play poker tournaments.  The year 2016 has proved to be a very successful year for Noda as he has been consistently in the money in most of the tournaments he has joined in the year.  The biggest cash out to date is in this year’s WPT LA Poker Classic Limit Holdem Ironman Event where he placed 1st and took home US$30,500.

  1. Abe Takahiro

Abe Takahiro has been seen in the circuit as early as 2011.  Although he may not have as much feathers on his hat as Thomas and Noda, Takahiro has been making his presence felt, especially by being in the money in 2 of the PokerStars’ tournaments that he has joined this year.  He has 921,000 chips going into Day 4 and has the 2nd largest chips on the table.  Despite his lack of feathers, he has a good chance of taking this event down.

  1. Juhui Cheng

Juhui Cheng is the chip leader entering Day 4 with 958,000 chips.  Cheng, who hails from China, has no prior record to date.  However, basing it on his performance in the tournament so far, he has a very good chance to be the last man standing.

  1. Xiao Ling Li

Xiao Ling Li has 193,000 chips and has the smallest chip stack on the table.  Based on her records, Li has recently just been joining the Asian circuit and exhibiting poker skills that show a lot of promise.  Her being in the final 6 is a testament to her potential as she has made history by becoming the very first female to make the final table of a WPT National Korea Event.

Xiao Ling Li (Photo PKC)

Other notables that made it in the money but not the final 6 are PKC Team member Ian Brion, XiQiang Chen, 2nd placer to the recent CPG China Championships and JonHo Christensen who mad an amazing performance by cashing in the Main Event and winning the PLO Event a few hours after.


7 Akiba, Yusuke 11850000 Japan
8 Liu, Yin 9330000 China
9 Tang, Yuefeng 8030000 China
10 Lee, James 4850000 USA
11 Ye, Bi Lian 4850000 China
12 Kozo, Yamada 4850000 Japan
13 Chen, XiQiang 3830000 China
14 Brion, Ian 3830000 Philippines
15 Li, Cha 3830000 China
16 Han, Liwei 3350000 China
17 Masatoshi, Tanaka 3350000 Japan
18 Fu, Xiao 3350000 China
19 Christensen, JonHo 2870000 Norway

Article by Gabrielle Barredo

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Louis Hartwell

Graduated in Media Communication at the University of Lausanne, Louis Hartman is a co-founder of He began his career in Cambodia as freelance journalist. In same time he was making his living by playing poker every night at that time. Intense learner, he read dozens of poker strategy books to improve his skills during many years. With a strong interest about poker "behind the scene" in Asia and his communication skills, Louis launched Somuchpoker in 2014.

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